Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. E. Jack Asher

Second Advisor

Dr. Bradley E. Huitema

Third Advisor

Dr. Norman M. Peterson

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The institutional mental patient is trained to function within the institutional setting. Relegated to the lowest organizational stratum, the inpatient adjusts his behavior accordingly. The present study was designed to find support for the contention that these institutionally induced changes are internalized. It was expected that (a) evidence of congruence between inpatients' beliefs and their organizational status would be detected, and (b) belief system change as a function of institutional experience would also be discernible. The results generally supported these main hypotheses; however, due to the nature and number of uncontrolled variables, the data are inconclusive. Alternative interpretations of these data, the implications of various included demographic variables, and possible modification for future research designs are considered.